Meet Your Neighbor | SierraSun.com

Meet Your Neighbor

Emma Garrard/Sierra SunJason Heapy

How long have you been in the area?We moved to Truckee in April of this year. So were new residents.What are your first impressions?Oh, we love it. We absolutely adore it. Were Bay Area natives and have always wanted to find our way up here, but it took a couple of years to figure it out.We were actually living in London last year, working on a Harry Potter film, The Order of the Phoenix. And during that time living in London we really decided that we were done with city life and wanted to make Truckee our home base. While we were still living in London, our friends pointed us to a house. So my wife flew out and we bought it. I took the summer off and am just now probably going to go back into work up in Vancouver. Im going to work on a film for the next five or six months. Were kind of making Truckee a home base for my freelance film career. And my wife, Kelly, works for Martis Camp.Why do you like the mountain life?Were extremely active. So being in this environment allows us to play in the way we like to play. It took living in all those cities to kind of realize that thats not where we want to live permanently. The biggest thing from the city life the hustle and bustle is always there. And weve kind of learned that thats not something we like all the time. The one thing we miss from the city are the burritos.How long have you been in the film industry?Ive been working in the film industry going on 14 years. I went to school at San Jose City College for about six months before I got an internship at PDI Dreamworks. I was a little lost in school. I wasnt sure what I was going to school for. But when I found the opportunity to work for major studios, I dropped out of school and got the internship as a production assistant at PDI Dreamworks. [They paid me] six bucks an hour, plus the benefits of having access to a studio, and learning studio life and production life.What was the first film you worked on?The first film that I worked on was The Peacemaker, which was a George Clooney and Jodie Foster film.What is it, basically, that you do?Im the go-between between [the film] and the studio that Im working for. For instance, right now Im working for the Moving Picture Company. Theyre based out of London. The essence of my job is: A major studio like Warner Bros., Paramount or Fox will subcontract their animation or visual effects work to the studio and its my job to basically set the budget for the film. As a producer my main roles consist of creating budgets, schedules, client relations and artist management. I kind of act as a go-between between the studio and the director, and ensuring that the directors vision is being understood.What do you like most about working in the film industry?The creative control that I get to have on a major motion picture. The experience of taking a film from its fruition, from its beginning meetings, story-board and original creative discussion, and getting that onto the big screen for the whole audience to enjoy. So you just finished Harry Potter. What was that like?It was amazing, especially being in London where the stories come from. Its such an English story line, and to be in London and working on a film thats so hugely popular there, that in itself is really exciting. To have access to the sets and the director, who were just miles from our production studio. Again, a story that is so popular among kids and adults, and to be involved in a film of that magnitude is just really a great venture.Whats your next film?The next film is called Watchman. Its a Warner Bros. film based on the graphic novel. So for the comic book freaks they all know the story. The director is a guy named Zack Snyder who directed 300 recently and Dawn of the Dead. Its kind of like in the realm of the X-men films or Hell Boy.Do you see yourself working on any films involving Tahoe in the near future?Well, I would like to. I would like to keep my career as close to home. If that would mean sports adventure films or ski, snowboarding films thats kind of why I want to get my name out there. Theres a producer in town who would like to be as local as possible. The Sierra Suns Julie Brown interviewed Jason Heapy for this weeks Meet Your Neighbor. Please send suggestions for Meet Your Neighbor to jbrown@sierrasun.com.